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Novak Djokovic Wins Appeal Against Deportation from Australia

Djokovic visa Australia
Credit: Carine06,  Attribution-Share Alike 2.0 Generic/Wikipedia

Novak Djokovic won his appeal against Australia’s decision to cancel his visa on Monday, with a judge reinstating his visa and ordering that he be released from hotel quarantine immediately.

Djokovic had spent four nights in an immigration detention hotel in Melbourne before the virtual hearing got underway.

Border officials previously ruled that the tennis star did not meet the criteria for a COVID exemption as part of entry requirements.

However, the federal government’s counsel said that ministerial powers could be invoked to cancel Djokovic’s visa. It is therefore unclear if Djokovic will now participate in the Australian Open, or whether the government will extend legal proceedings further.

Tennis Australia sparked controversy last week after saying the Australian Open champion had been granted a medical exemption to play at the tournament, but Prime Minister Scott Morrison later said he had been advised that “such an exemption was not in place.”

Djokovic’s lawyers say he received a positive COVID-19 test in December, which they argue makes him eligible for an exemption to Australia’s vaccination rules.

Support for Djokovic in Australia

On Sunday, Greek-Australian tennis star Nick Kyrgios called on Australia to “do better” in its handling of Novak Djokovic who was confined to a temporary detention facility in Melbourne as he mounted a legal challenge against the cancellation of his visa.

Kyrgios, who has been an outspoken critic of Djokovic in the past, came to the Serbian star’s defense. He called for Australia to treat Djokovic with more humanity.

“Look I definitely believe in taking action, I got vaccinated because of others and for my mum’s health, but how we are handling Novak’s situation is bad, really bad,” he said.

Djokovic, currently tied with Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal with 20 Grand Slam singles titles and hoping to win his 10th Australian Open title in Melbourne, also received support from fellow player John Isner.

This is a developing story


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